Mike Fleming

UPDATE: Fox has issued a formal announcement on Robert Kraft’s exit, which follows the original break.

EXCLUSIVE: Longtime Fox Music President Robert Kraft is leaving the studio. He has been chief exec since 1994 and president since 1998, supervising music for all Fox films including the scores and soundtracks for Avatar, Titanic, Waiting To Exhale, Moulin Rouge, Walk The Line, Once, Slumdog Millionaire and Black Swan. On the TV side, he worked on everything from 24 to The Simpsons, Family Guy, Ally McBeal and The X-Files.

I’d heard that he left after Fox didn’t offer him an extension but offered to keep him there without a long-term agreement. He chose to leave but might take on a consulting role, I’ve heard. Fox would not comment on the reason for his exit but confirmed he would be leaving after Deadline heard he’d told his staff. The studio issued this statement: “For 18 years, Robert has guided Fox Music, honoring its rich legacy while bringing many of today’s top musical artists to our film and television productions. We thank him for his invaluable contributions to the company, and wish him well with his future endeavors.”

Robert Kraft has decided to exit his position as President of Fox Music.

Kraft has been the chief executive of Fox Music since 1994, becoming President in 1998. He supervised the music for all of the Studio’s motion pictures, including scores and soundtracks for Avatar, Titanic, Waiting to Exhale, Moulin Rouge! Garden State, Ice Age, Walk the Line, Once, Slumdog Millionaire, Black Swan and Rio.

He also supervised the music for Twentieth Century Fox Television hits such as “Ally McBeal,” “The X-Files,” “24,” “American Dad,” “Family Guy,” and “The Simpsons.”

Since Kraft became Fox Music’s chief executive, the division has amassed worldwide sales of over 65 million albums, producing three platinum, six multi-platinum and six gold records. Fox Music has garnered 10 Academy Award nominations, winning four Oscars; 20 Golden Globe nominations and five Golden Globes; 61 Emmy nominations with 11 wins; and 49 Grammy nominations and 14 Grammy Awards.

Commented Joe Hartwick, President of Physical Production: “For 18 years, Robert has guided Fox Music, honoring its rich legacy while bringing many of today’s top musical artists to our film and television productions. We thank him for his invaluable contributions to the company, and wish him well with his future endeavors.”

Prior to joining Fox, Kraft co-produced the Academy Award winning song “Under the Sea,” as well as the Grammy -winning triple-platinum soundtrack of The Little Mermaid. In 1992, Kraft was nominated for an Academy Award, a Grammy Award, and a Golden Globe Award for co-writing “Beautiful Maria of My Soul,” the theme song from the Warner Bros. feature The Mambo Kings. In 1999, Kraft was nominated for a second Golden Globe for co-writing — with songwriter Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds and film composer George Fenton — the song, “How Can I Not Love You” for the 20th Century Fox feature Anna and the King.

Kraft, who is creating a new venture to develop musical films and television shows, commented: “I’ve spent the past 18 years at Fox Music being involved in the creation of wonderful film music, and in the process have had the distinct pleasure of working with some of the most creative composers, filmmakers, and recording artists in the world. I’m very proud of what Fox Music has accomplished during my tenure, and I know the division will continue to inspire both music and film audiences for a long time to come. I am excited about the opportunity to develop my own musical films and TV shows.”

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